way to accomplish these things is to allow the rates to go up on the top two percent of tax payers. we're not going to twist ourselves into contortions to apiece a vocal minority of the tea party. >> reporter: in turn, senate minority leader mitch mcconnell said president obama needs to ride herd on democrats if there's any hope of agreement. >> only one person in the country can deliver the members of his party to support a deal that he makes. and that's the president. there have been no deals of this magnitude made in modern times in congress and forced on a reluctant president. i would hope the president would turn off the campaign. congratulations you had a great victory. and let's get serious about dealing with this deficit and debt here at the end of the year. >> reporter: the partisan back and forth was briefly on hold this evening for the lighting of the capital christmas tree but there was little else in the day's developments to suggest happy holidays. >> woodruff: still to come on the newshour, nato's decision to deploy an anti-missile system to turkey; the massive prote
strategy for your businesses, and it is not a game that i will play. >> reporter: president obama today, in washington, assured business executives he'll reject attempts to link the fiscal cliff budget negotiations to future increases in the nation's debt ceiling. "the new york times" reported republicans might accept higher tax rates on wealthier americans to avoid triggering tax hikes for everyone. in return, they'd demand greater spending cuts next year before raising the federal borrowing limit. >> if congress in any way suggests that they're going to tie negotiations to debt ceiling votes and take us to the brink of default once again as part of a budget negotiation, which, by the way, we have never done in our history until we did it last year, i will not play that game because we've got to... we've got to break that habit before it starts. >> reporter: the 2011 standoff between the president and republicans led the nation to the brink of national default. standard and poor's even lowered its rating on u.s. government bonds. now, the president has proposed he be given author
firm stand. we have seen in the past obama has had to make a deal on taxes. host: what specific benefits do these programs provide? guest: usually some kind of a cash benefit or they may help the search for a job. it is usually about $300 a week. it can vary from state sen. in the mississippi i want to say it is closer to $200. host: how are the programs funded? guest: they are funded through payroll taxes. through the trust the state administers the program and the money goes to the unemployed. host: talk about qualifications for unemployment insurance. what do people have to meet in order to apply? guest: generally what you have to do is you have to have a year of earnings. your earnings have to meet a certain threshold. you have to have been let go from a job. you cannot storm off having quit and necessarily qualify for -- to qualify for unemployment benefits. if he graduated from college and do not have a job, you get unemployment benefits. it is a pretty easy system to get into if you were laid off after 10 years. host: we have some qualifications a person must meet on the
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captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> ifill: president obama said today there would be no deal to avert an economic plunge unless republicans agree to increase taxes on the wealthiest americans. good evening. i'm gwen ifill. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight, kwame holman has the latest on washington's impasse on taxes and spending. >> ifill: then we examine nato's decision to send patriot anti- missile systems to turkey, as fears grow that syrian chemical weapons could cross the border. >> woodruff: jeffrey brown talks to mcclatchy newspapers' egypt correspondent nancy youssef about the massive antigovernment protests in cairo today. >> ifill: we continue our series of conversations about the fiscal cliff. tonight we hear from economist paul krugman. >> i don't think there's going to be much of a deal. i think there's going to be a kind of... there will be an outcome. >> woodruff: from haiti, fred de sam lazaro reports on the efforts to stem a deadly cholera epidemic that began after the 2010 earthquake. >> ifill: and ray suarez talks to au
rejecting president obama's proposal which includes a $1.6 trillion tax increase, a $50 billion economic stimulus package and new power to increase the debt ceiling without congressional approval. the offer featured higher tax rates for households making over $250,000 a year. a one year postponement of the sequester and about $400 billion in savings over ten years for medicare and other entitlement programs. >> despite the claims that the president supports a -- >> thousand is the time fnow is republicans to move past the happy talk about revenues, ill defined, of course, and put specifics on the table. the president has made his proposal. we need a proposal from them. >> today president obama is taking his pitch on the road. he will be visiting the philadelphia suburbs employing campaign style tactics in hopes of mobilizing the public to his side. he'll be speaking at a manufacturing facility arguing that businesses it depend on middle class consumers over the holiday season. despite all this, you see the futures today indicating higher. dow up by about 35. does that surprise you guys?
obama speaking to the business round table today, attending to the group's quarterly meeting of ceos. jim mcnerny says including meaningful and comprehensive tax and entitlement reforms. this is the number one story that we've been talking about every morning here since the election. fiscal cliff, big, big issue. there are now, it seems, growing numbers of people on both the right and the left who would like to see us just go over that fiscal cliff. how big of a problem would that be? >> that would be a big problem. i actually still believe that those -- the democrats, the administration, republicans in the final analysis don't want to see that happen. they do understand that not only would that present a problem in the near term as we went over the cliff at the end of the year, but we still then have the whole debt ceiling fight that would transpire shortly into the new year. the issue isn't simply the negative result of going over the cliff, but it's also that business, consumers, everybody continues to hold back on the uncertainty. and we believe the economy is pretty well positio
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